We all know how difficult working out can be – and, let’s face it, oftentimes, we do not have the time or energy to head out to the gym. Not only that, but there are times when gym memberships can be too expensive, and your closest gym may not have the equipment you need to achieve the fitness standards you want.
As tempting as it is, you know that skipping leg day is a bad idea. But, what if you could have your leg day workout at home? Even in small, crowded spaces, where you may not be able to fit full-sized exercise equipment, there are still plenty of opportunities to exercise, as well as workout equipment that fits your everyday needs.
10 Best Small Exercise Machines for Legs
- Mini Exercise Bike – DeskCycle Under Desk Exercise Bike
- Folding Exercise Bike – XTERRA Fitness FB150 folding exercise bike
- Mini Stairmaster – Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster
- Mini Stepper with Resistance Bands – Sunny Health & Fitness mini-stepper
- Under Desk Elliptical – Cubii Jr. Desk Elliptical
- Mini Elliptical – Stamina 55-1602 Inmotion elliptical
- Multi-Function Deep Sissy Squat Bench – Leikefitness
- 8-in-1 Sissy Squat Machine – GYMAX
- Resistance Loop Exercise Bands – Fit Simplify Resistance Loop Bands
- Under Desk Treadmill – Sunny Health and Fitness Asuna
Leg workout gear that fits in almost every small apartment – some of which can be used at your computer, or in front of your tv, so you don’t have to worry about the chance you may miss that new episode of the Simpsons. It is a win for everyone.
1. DeskCycle Under Desk Bike Pedal Exerciser – Portable leg exercise machine
The DeskCycle Under Desk Exercise Bike (Amazon) is a well-known workout machine. In fact, it may be one of the few machines that everyone uses, because it’s one of the simplest machines at your local gym. However, this also may mean that it is almost always taken. Thankfully, there are small versions of exercise bikes – which, typically, are small enough to fit under desks, or in front of the couch – that are perfect for at-home exercising.
While it may provide a lower intensity workout than the traditional bike, given the fact these small bikes usually only include the pedals and the frame, it is a perfect solution for individuals who want simple workouts and feel as though they are staying still for too long.
Several popular brands of mini exercise bikes exist on the market and can be bought from plenty of local retailers, such as Walmart, Walgreens, Sears, and many outdoor stores. The prices vary, depending on the brand of mini bike, chosen, however resale sites such as eBay has bikes listed for as low as $20 used, which, for someone just starting out or looking for moderate exercise is an excellent deal.
2. XTERRA Fitness Folding Exercise Bike – Leg exercise machine while sitting
The XTERRA Fitness FB150 folding exercise bike is the perfect piece of equipment for anyone that’s got limited space and a small budget. It is compact and easy to move around, courtesy of some wheels below it. Setting it up is a fairly straightforward process, too; you won’t get lost if you follow the instructions. Performance-wise, this sturdy, low-impact exercise bike is the perfect cardio machine for amateur and beginner home cyclists.
The folding exercise weighs just 32 pounds and measures 31.89 inches long by 18.1 inches wide by 43.4 inches high when unfolded. It folds down into a compact 18.1 inches by 18.1 inches by 50.79 inches, which makes it easy to store.
- Magnetic resistance is friction-free, smooth, and quiet.
- Designed from thick steel tubing
- Conveniently folds to fit most closets.
- Comfortably padded over-sized seat
- EKG pulse grips monitor heart rate while exercising
- The console displays calories, pulse, time, speed, and distance.
- Comes with transport wheels for maximum portability
- It offers eight levels of resistance.
- Adjustable seat height (from 4’10” to 5’10”
- Adjustable foot pedal straps
- Durable 3-piece pedal crank
The compact exercise bike is covered by a 1-year warranty for its frame and a 90-day warranty for parts.
About the brand
XTERRA Fitness is a manufacturer of different types of workout equipment ranging from sub-thousand-dollar machines for home use to expensive, high-end gym equipment. The brand is famous for making quality machinery at affordable prices. Aside from exercise bikes, the company manufactures treadmills, rowers, and ellipticals as well.
3. Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster
My next suggestion for at-home exercise is the Xiser Commercial Mini Stairmaster (Amazon). Many individuals have used a stepping machine at some point – a simple machine that minims walking patterns, forcing the individual to step up and down.
These machines may also be referred to as stair-stepping machines, as they mimic the motions of walking up and down the stairs. In its miniature form, these machines use resistance to help the individual tone their leg muscles and burn up to 100 calories in an hour, while at their desk.
Typically, the machine has two-stepping peddles, along with armbands that can be adjusted to change the resistance levels, depending on the type of workout the individual is looking for.
These machines are great for moderate exercise, for individuals who want to keep moving in spaces that are typically more stationary (such as offices or small apartments) and are relatively affordable. While many versions only provide low-intensity workouts as well, they are great if you wish to purchase a simple workout machine that ensures you are getting exercise throughout the course of the day.
These machines are also relatively affordable, and sold at your local retailers such as Walmart, making them easily accessible, and a great choice for individuals who are either always on the go, or who have limited space to work with.
4. Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper Stair Stepper Exercise Equipment With Resistance Bands
It can be a little intimidating to use exercise equipment as a total newbie. This Sunny Health & Fitness mini-stepper takes away most of the first-day nerves due to its simple design. It is perfect for anyone looking for an affordable piece of equipment on which to perform easy exercises at home. From top to bottom, this stepper is built with convenience in mind.
The mini-stepper measures 16 inches long by 12.5 inches wide by 13.5 inches high. Its pedals are 11 ¼ inches long, so there’s plenty of room to adjust your stance. It can support as much as 220lbs.
- Features upper body resistance bands
- Solid design (supports up to 220lbs)
- A stabilizing ring prevents it from shaking and improves safety.
- Digital monitor displays step count, calories, time, and scan
- Adjustable step height for tailored intensity
- The non-adjustable hydraulic tension system
- Non-slip textured foot pedal.
The Sunny Health & Fitness Mini Stepper comes with a 1-year warranty, plus a 180-day manufacturer warranty for all its components.
About the brand
Sunny Health & Fitness is a company that focuses on providing professional gym equipment for home use. The company deals in a wide range of products, including elliptical machines, treadmills, steppers, and workout benches. Their products are designed for ease of use and convenient storage, so they’re ideal for home use.
5. Cubii Jr. Under Desk Elliptical – Leg exercise machine for elderly
Much like its previous mini counterparts, the Cubii Jr. Desk Elliptical (Amazon) is an at-home workout tool that functions much like the modern elliptical, which many of us are familiar with. Mini ellipticals are often manufactured similarly to mini steppers, in that they often provide stepping mechanisms, as well as adjustments to the intensity of the resistance you would like to use.
However, they often do not have the armbands attached and fit even more easily under work desks and in workspaces. These allow individuals to receive the same, basic workout that a full-size elliptical can provide, but take up only a fraction of the space.
These machines, depending on the quality of the product itself, range in price. Lower-quality machines start out priced at around $40, and go up to around $120 – while this price may seem high, it is still far more affordable than a full-size elliptical and saves much more space. You could even use this while in front of the TV, as many are made to be relatively quiet, making it the perfect solution to your need to binge-watch Netflix, but also stay in shape.
6. Stamina Inmotion Elliptical
Anyone looking for a casual type of exercise that can be done at home or even at work should look into the Stamina 55-1602 Inmotion elliptical. Its smaller stride makes it less demanding than professional gym ellipticals but still provides an adequate workout that’s quiet, easy to use, and challenging enough. If you’re after a workout machine that you can use while watching TV or working at a standing desk, this is a good option to explore.
This elliptical machine measures a compact 24.5 inches by 17 inches by 11.38 inches. At 30 lbs, it is highly portable and easy to store and set up in tight spaces like office cubicles and bedrooms.
- Lightweight, compact, and portable design
- Tension is adjustable via the digital monitor.
- Operates quietly
- Designed for exercise during passive/low-attention activities
- Textured non-slip pedals
- Manual tension knob
- Multi-function monitor tracks progress
- It can be used sitting, standing, and in forward and reverse.
- Available in three colors (green, orange, & silver)
The Stamina 55-1602 Inmotion Elliptical has a 12-month warranty for its stocky frame. It also comes with a 90-day cover for all its parts.
About the brand
Stamina is a fitness brand with a twist. Unlike other brands, the company’s focus is on mobile workout stations and is especially focused on creating equipment that people can use while performing other activities. They manufacture rowing machines, exercise bikes, compact steppers and striders, and equipment for office cardio. They also make outdoor workout equipment like trampolines.
7. Leikefitness Deluxe Multi-Function Deep Sissy Squat Bench Home Gym Workout Station Leg Exercise Machine
Many of the people that have bought the Leikefitness Deluxe Multi-Function Deep Sissy Squat Bench say that it is the best investment they’ve ever made. If you’re looking to build your own home gym, this comes highly recommended as one of the must-have pieces of equipment. Its versatile design makes it ideal for numerous different exercises, and its solid build promises lasting durability.
The sissy squat bench measures 39.4 inches by 21.7 inches by 31.7 inches and grosses a net weight of just over 30 lbs.
- The versatile design makes it suitable for deep sissy squats, ban squats, back extensions, side extensions, forward lunges, and more.
- It is foldable and portable, and therefore easy to store and move from place to place.
- The height, length, and angle of the padded foot holder can be adjusted to suit your requirements.
- The frame is heavy-duty steel, and so is the non-slip footplate.
- Features a comfortable rear cushion and foam-padded foot holder
- Adjustable to suit different heights and sizes
- It is easy to use and requires no assembly out of the box.
The product doesn’t seem to come with a warranty of any kind on either the frame or the components and the accessories.
About the brand
The leikefitness brand is a fairly new player in the fitness industry, but it has already crafted a reputation as a provider of reliable sporting and workout equipment. Apart from the deep sissy squat bench, they also manufacture aerobic decks, adjustable weight benches, trampolines, and roller wheels. Many of their products are below $200, making them a very popular provider of entry-level workout equipment.
8. GYMAX Sissy Squat Machine, 8-in-1 Workout Machine
Even though the GYMAX sissy squat machine is suitable for any workout enthusiast with a hankering for sweaty exercise, it is especially recommended for people with knee problems. The 8-in-1 workout machine is as versatile as it gets, allowing you to target the lower back, abs, glutes, and even shoulders in one fell swoop. It is a heck of a machine, especially for elderly workout enthusiasts who need low-impact exercises that won’t aggravate knee injuries or defects.
This 8-in-1 workout machine measures 39 inches long by 20 inches wide by 17.5 inches high. However, the seat height can be adjusted upwards to reach 29.5 inches high, depending on the size of the user.
- Supports various exercise modes, including squats, twists, push-ups, sit-ups, and supine leg lifts
- Offers three adjustable cushion levels plus nine adjustable height settings
- Equipped with soft, protective foam and a wide seating cushion for long-lasting comfort
- Comes with a comfortable, ergonomic handle
- Equipped with anti-skid foot pads
- The frame is made from thick, durable iron.
- Ideal for weight loss, body shaping, and for relieving body stiffness
- Corrects posture, improves aerobic fitness, and lowers blood pressure
- Comes with an elastic hook for resistance band attachment
- It is equipped with two wheels at the front to enhance portability and storage.
- Can withstand up to 256 lbs of weight
Although it includes a 12-month warranty for the frame, the brand offers stellar after-sale services whereby they’re willing to replace any parts that were damaged during shipping free of charge.
About the brand
MAX is a relatively new player in the fitness industry but a popular one regardless. Although the company previously only made long coats for women and men plus recreational equipment such as foosball tables, their 8-in-1 workout machine is a testament to their ability to create professional yet affordable equipment for fitness enthusiasts of all levels. MAX also manufactures punching bags and portable basket hoops, which is why they are considered a reliable supplier of a wide range of sporting goods.
9. Resistance Loop Exercise Bands
This workout technique is possibly the most viable, as it can be used standing or sitting. Leg resistance bands are also likely the most affordable option, with some sets being sold at dollar stores for as little as $10. These bands can strap to thighs, ankles, or around feet, and may be stretched out, working the muscles in your legs.
Resistance Loop Exercise Bands (Amazon) are a great workout for toning, and you may find them useful for attempting to keep busy while in the office, as they are relatively concealable.
These can be purchased virtually anywhere – from the dollar stores to Walmart, as well as nearly any online retailer that sells athletic gear. Of all of the options, if you are looking for something simple and affordable, this may be your best call.
They can be used sitting or standing, and are relatively portable, meaning you are able to take them with you to the office, in front of the tv, or even out to dinner if you so desired.
10. Sunny Health & Fitness ASUNA Premium Slim Folding Treadmill Running Machine
Despite being every gym goer’s most dreaded enemy, the treadmill often has many benefits. It provides for a mix of cardio, as well as the ability to practice running on an incline, allowing you to tone your leg muscles. However, we all also know that the treadmill is huge – nearly the size of a twin bed – and very loud, making it hard to use one in an apartment complex or in the office.
Cue the under-desk treadmill Sunny Health and Fitness Asuna (Amazon). While this particular piece of equipment may run at a higher cost – many of them start at around the $200 mark – they are definitely the closest to the type of workout you would expect to get in the gym, but at home. If you are looking for a true at-home workout, these are the perfect solution. Some are engineered to fit in line with a desk, meaning you can literally put it under your desk and use it while using your computer.
These, however, as previously mentioned, are far more expensive. They can be purchased through many online retailers, such as Amazon, Walmart, and Kohl’s. They are also less quiet, which may be an issue for some individuals and one you should be mindful of before purchasing it – if you need something relatively discrete, this may not be the best selection for you.
Conclusion: What Should I Choose?
Personally, I like the mini elliptical but Ultimately, it’s up to you. Before going and making your purchase, I strongly suggest considering what it is you are looking for – is its versatility, portability, and the integrity of the workout itself? These are important factors to consider, among your budget and space constraints. However, these options are undeniably the best when it comes to small exercise equipment for leg day.